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VOLUME 14 | NUMBER 6 | JUNE 2019
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Upcoming Events
Save the Date
Court News
Recent Cases


The Trusts and Estates eBulletin
is published monthly by the Trusts and Estates Law Section, coeditors:

Jana G. Garrotto

Stefanie S. Cutler
Ruttenberg Cutler, LLP

Jessica G. Gordon
Thompson Coburn LLP

Trusts and Estates Executive Committee Officers:

Marc L. Sallus, Esq, Chair
Stefanie S. Cutler, Vice-Chair
Jana G. Garrotto, Secretary & Treasurer
Julia L. Birkel, Esq, Immediate Past Chair


Upcoming Events

2019 A View from the Bench

Date: June 14, 2019
Time: 12:30-1:30 p.m.
Location: OMNI Hotel, Los Angeles

Please join us for a special lunch program where the Probate Judges of the Superior Court will give the State of Probate Court and update on changes in addition to providing their view of current issues relating to probate.

This event will also include the presentation of the Arthur K. Marshall Award to Hon. Brenda J. Penny.

Click here for more information and to register

Fundamental Court Appointed Counsel Training
(formerly PVP Training)

Date: June 22, 2019
Time: 8:00 a.m. -12:15 p.m.
Location: Marriott - Torrance / Redondo Beach, Torrance,

Annual refresher course which provides an overview of the role which Court-appointed counsel play when representing prospective conservatees and the duties that counsel is expected to fulfill.

Click here for more information and to register

Save the Date

September Symposium

Date: September 13, 2019
Location: Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles

More information TBA.


We'd like to thank The Sanborn Team for their sponsorship of our events.


Court News
LASC Probate Unit Announces New Software Program
For Probate Notes

The Probate Legal Unit has started using a new software system for drafting and posting probate notes for matters on calendar in the probate departments.

Click here for more information
Recent Cases
Civil Procedure

A trial court abused its discretion in dismissing a case that a plaintiff had not brought to trial within three years when a trial date had been set pursuant to the parties' stipulation and the case was ready for trial.

Corrinet v. Bardy - filed May 9, 2019, First District, Div. Four
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2174
Full text click here >

A request for costs under Code of Civil Procedure Sec. 998 is timely if filed with the arbitrator within 15 days of a final award. In response to such a request, an arbitrator has authority to award costs to the offering party. If an arbitrator refuses to award costs, judicial review is limited.

Heimlich v. Shivji - filed May 30, 2019
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2531
Full text click here >

A defendant's written election not to proceed with the filing of a petition to compel arbitration was an explicit waiver of its right to arbitrate the plaintiff's claims. The Court of Appeal decision in Cortez v. Doty Bros. Equipment does not reflect a change in the law on the arbitrability of alleged violations of a wage order.

Nunez v. Nevell Group, Inc. - filed May 2, 2019, publication ordered May 28, 2019, Fourth District, Div. Three
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2511
Full text click here >

Constitutional Law

If a minor has a 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983 cause of action, the statute of limitations begins running on the minor's 18th birthday. The minor's birthday is excluded when calculating time and the minor has two calendar years from his birthday to file suit.

Shalabi v. City of Fontana - filed May 21, 2019, Fourth District, Div. Two
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2417
Full text click here >

Family Law

For purposes of Family Code Sec. 7822(a)(3), a parent abandons her child when she leaves the child with the other parent for a year, with no communication or financial support, and the intent to abandon the child. A mother who sent her children to live with their father while she diligently treated her addictions before trying to regain custody did not abandon her children.

In re H.D. - filed May 8, 2019, Fourth District, Div. Two
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2183
Full text click here >

Nothing in Family Code Sec. 217 requires a party to offer evidence at a motion hearing when the motion is being decided solely based on the party's written submissions because no party has taken proper steps to present live testimony. When the parties fail to present any live testimony in support or opposition to a motion in family court, Code of Civil Procedure Sec. 2009 controls.

In re Marriage of George & Deamon - filed May 17, 2019, Fourth District, Div. One
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2356
Full text click here >

A family court commits reversible error in considering a modification of a child custody and child support order issued by an out-of-state court where a child custody proceeding had been commenced without first communicating with the out-of-state court.

In re Marriage of Kent - filed May 17, 2019, Fourth District, Div. One
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2360
Full text click here >

Professional Responsibility

A denial of a petition to compel a Mandatory Fee Arbitration Act arbitration is not an appealable order.

Levinson Arshonsky & Kurtz LLP v. Kim - filed May 29, 2019, Second District, Div. One
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2564
Full text click here>

Real Property

Code of Civil Procedure Sec. 580d does not preclude a creditor holding two deeds of trust on the same property from recovering a deficiency judgment on the junior lien extinguished by a nonjudicial foreclosure sale on the senior.

Black Sky Capital, LLC v. Cobb - filed May 6, 2019
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2151
Full text click here >

A plaintiff stated a viable breach of contract claim against a homeowners association where the plaintiffs presented evidence the association's covenants, conditions, and restrictions asserted that the association would keep a project's common areas "in first class condition," yet the association was performing no preventive maintenance. Outside the covenants, conditions, and restrictions, the association had no independent duty to maintain pipes and roofing in the project's common areas.

Sands v. Walnut Gardens Condominium Association - filed May 13, 2019, Second District, Div. Eight
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2223
Full text click here >

When a government agency considers increasing a property-related fee, a fee payor can challenge the method of fee allocation without first participating in a Proposition 218 hearing that addresses only a proposed rate increase.

Plantier v. Ramona Municipal Water District - filed May 30, 2019
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2537
Full text click here >


A utility company has no duty to guard against pecuniary or commercial loss that does not arise from actionable physical, emotional or reputational injury to persons or physical injury to property.

Southern California Gas Leak Cases - filed May 30, 2019
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2543
Full text click here >


While a trust cannot act in its own name and must always act through its trustee, a trust is a "person" that may associate in a partnership under the Uniform Partnership Act of 1994.

Han v. Hallberg - filed May 21, 2019, Second District, Div. Eight
Cite as 2019 S.O.S. 2424
Full text click here >


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